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Artsy-Fartsy; Lady Bugs; Stamens and Pistils; A Death Star? A Green Aura; Wrappers and Stampers; Going Postal

On Sunday, I received my semi-annual dose of culture, in the form of an arts and crafts show. Members of the Glass Fusion Club were showing off their creations at the Seabreeze Rec Center, and I had a special invitation from our friends Joyce and Sharon, shown here at their table. Unfortunately, Suzanne was giving a reading and couldn’t make it, but I got to see the results of their artistry and creativity. I was also able to get a couple of really cool, beautiful Christmas presents.

If you haven’t been to a Glass Fusion exhibition, you should go to their next exhibition in the Spring. Here is a close-up of one of their creations, a beautiful platter with lady-bugs that could be on exhibit in a museum. How cool is that!

We have a new plant/tree/something-or-other out front, a red hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis), also known as flor de Jamaica in Mexico and Honduras, that is blooming at the moment, at least until I manage to kill it accidentally by over-watering, under-watering, over-feeding, under-feeding, or whatever else People with Brown Thumbs do to poor plants in an ill-fated effort to raise flowers. One of the blooms was right at eye level, and as I gazed into its nether regions attempting to identify its stamen, pistils and other private parts, I thought I’d get out my camera and macro lens for a close-up – and was impressed by Mother Nature’s creativity and perfect design…

I also decided to capture (visually) this mushroom on a neighbor’s lawn before the landscape crew mowed it down later that day. It reminded me of the Death Star in Star Wars… okay, so I have a vivid imagination…

… but it didn’t take much imagination to see that my friend Bob is a bit Goofy when he and his Lovely Princess Bride Jessica joined us for dinner recently. Bob is a retired US Air Force Reserve  Colonel who built his own private plane, an RV Flyer, and takes some well-deserved grief from the Navy; Jessica, on the other hand, is a former firearms instructor, and NOBODY gives her any lip! We had visited them in their mountain cabin in the Adirondacks a couple of years ago, during the brief two week-long period between massive snowfalls when roads were drivable. They are also Disney folks, and looking forward to their next visit to the Fort Wilderness campground.

Bob mentioned that he often hikes around The Villages at 0500 (5:00 AM for you lay-about civilians who are snug in their beds at that early hour). I thought I’d try it, and actually got started at 0430 for a 5 miler. (In truth, I couldn’t sleep, and didn’t want to keep Suzanne, Rudy and Gretchen awake with my tossing and turning.) Anyway, I soon found out that it is very dark indeed at 0430, and there isn’t much going on until Starbucks opens at 0530. I was there when the door opened, along with several other night crawlers. After my coffee and hike, it was still dark! I had to wait until way past 7 to visit the ninth green at Amelia for this photo op. The sun looked surreal rising over the palm trees, creating an aura-like glow… does that make it a “green aura”?

My Lovely Bride’s latest Sanaya Says book, In the Silence, is here! The FedEx Guy dropped off 300 copies the other day, and because we had over 125 advance orders, we held a Wrapping and Stamping party at our house. While Suzanne autographed, Jan wrapped, Bob and I stamped and Bev did Quality Control with her tablet spreadsheets. Elizabeth even joined us for moral support; I wanted her to bring 18 boxes of wrapped books and packages to the post office, but she evidently thought her Corvette was too small for the job.

Suzanne and her indentured servant (Moi) drove to the Fruitland Park Post Office where a very kind lady helped us process our mountain of book packages. Here MLB gets her upper body workout. When we were done, the Nice Postal Lady asked Suzanne if this would be a regular event… maybe we’ll go to Oxford with the next batch…

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